Wedding flowers trends 2016 from Bloomologie

Did you know that a third of all proposals and engagements happen at Christmas? And given that next month is a leap year (get ready girls!), I thought a post about this year’s hottest wedding flower trends, might be handy…

 

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IN – Relaxed, wild, garden-gathered bouquets

Over the past few years there has been a shift away from the very stiff, formal bouquet of all one or two types of flower, towards something freer and more loose. The roundy-moundy dome bouquet of roses is dead. Instead it’s about a wilder look, that feels more romantic and mixes up foliage, wild flowers, even foraged branches, with heritage tea roses and old fashioned blowsy blooms, such as dahlias, zinnia, chrysanthemums (the proper, old fashioned ones), and vintage dianthus. these are the kind of flowers that you can’t buy in Sainsbury’s – they’re truly special and deserving of a place in a one-of-a-kind bouquet.

OUT – structured, dome-y bouquets of all one flower.

assymetric bouquet bloomologie BFA

IN – wide and asymmetric hand-tied bouquets

I’m not talking about the traditional wired shower bouquet or tear-drop here, but about something that is much more idiosyncratic. The look is unstructured and wild, but each bloom has been very carefully placed to create a horizontal bouquet rather than a round one. Some flowers “break out” from the bulk of bouquet for a very natural look. Ferns, trailing stems and twisted branches add to the asymmetric style, which at first glance looks like it has been scooped together, but that has actually taken a great deal of styling (much like the “no make-up, make-up look that takes longer to do than ordinary make-up).

OUT – wired shower bouquets and round hand-ties.

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IN – trailing ribbons v garden twine

In keeping with the loose, relaxed bouquet style that is so on-trend, long, romantic trailing ribbons, often more than one type, even sequins, are very popular. Alternatively, stems wrapped in natural garden twine or subtle ribbon that is short, exposing the natural stem ends are also replacing the traditional satin ribbon ‘handle’ style that covered the stems completely.

OUT – satin ribbon covering the stems completely and fixed with diamante or pearl pins.

IN – blush, peaches and cream

White and ivory is on the wain, as warmer blush, peach, apricot and cream shades are on the rise. These antique colours combine really well with dark burgundy or bright oranges to create a painterly palette of shades and tones with more depth and texture than white. I expect to see more coffee shades, from latte to mocha, coming through this year, too.

OUT – white and ivory

shower bouquet bloomologie 5

IN – Violet and purple

Brides who do choose colour are REALLY going for colour, looking for sumptuous jewel tones that can hold their own against metallic or beaded gowns – especially for bridesmaids where darker dresses are increasingly popular. Dark, almost black tulips, peonies, dahlias, hellebores and scabious are on the rise, as well as white or ivory hellebores and anenomes with deep-purple to black centres. This can give a classic bouquet a cool, modern edge.

Out – sugar-y sweet pastels.

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IN – The clash

Riotous shades of orange, yellow, pink, blue and purple – all in one vase, crate or urn – collide to create a look that’s eclectic and vibrant, but as colourful as the garden at Great Dixter. Not one for the fearless, this look is fun, bold and playful, which more brides are going for.

OUT – “theme” colours for a wedding.

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IN – Food

Yup, mini pineapples, grapes, cabbages (as shown above), globe artichokes, pumpkins – increasingly floral arrangements are becoming more like an artist’s still life that mixes up fruit, vegetables and flowers.

 

IN – garlands, groups, and mix-and-match arrangements

The classic “centrepiece” is out, and increasingly it’s more about a collection of mini vases and tea lights, a long garland with candles and some satellite arrangements dotted through it, or a mix of long, low arrangements and taller, bold statements. Why? Well, for a start the types of tables are changing with more long tables becoming a trend, but also it feels less formal and more modern to have clusters of flowers rather than one focal point, repeated.

OUT – the traditional table centre.

 

IN – Foliage and trees

Flower walls undoubtedly look ‘wow’ but unless you have the budget of the Kardashians, they’re not for everyone. And, dare I say it, it feels too “done” for me, too tight and twee. Instead, I’m seeing lots more trees to make dramatic statements (and you can hire them for the day), especially inside churches, as well as flower curtains (strings of hanging flowers), and foliage walls and arches, that have impact and interest – adding texture as well as colour.

OUT – flower walls

 

IN – Metallics

Gold and silver sequinned tablecloths, copper and brass vases and urns, metal lanterns and mercury class tea light holders. Metallics are a huge interiors trend that are filtering through to weddings, both as a glam look and also for a more eclectic take on vintage.

OUT – jam jars and Mason Ball – yes I really said that!

I’d love to know your thoughts – what am I missing? What would you add or change? I’m all ears…

Find our more at www.bloomologie.co.uk

Snowdrop spotting

For that first glimpse of spring, there’s nowhere better than the places cared for by the National Trust, which have beautiful displays of snowdrops across the country. The delicate white flowers transform woodland and garden floors in early spring and are one of the first signs of life after the winter months

Pleasure Ground Wood Chirk

Mike Calnan, Head of Gardens for the National Trust said, “Beautiful drifts of white snowdrops are one of the great pleasures of visiting gardens at the end of winter.  But look closely and you’ll soon discover variation among the carpet of white flowers. At Anglesey Abbey there are over 300 different snowdrop varieties growing in the garden. 

“Snowdrops are promiscuous plants, they cross-fertilise easily, producing new varieties.  The differences are very subtle and it’s always a challenge to spot them but this is what makes snowdrops so fascinating to collectors.”

From stunning bulb meadows to the UK’s largest winter garden, here are the special National Trust places to enjoy a family day out surrounded by snowdrops:

South West

 

Kingston Lacy, Dorset

Snowdrops, 1 – 29 February, 10am – 4pm

Kingston Lacy welcomes a dazzling blanket of snowdrops each year. The garden wakes up to spring in January and February when thousands of flowers burst through the soil, transforming areas of the garden into a sea of white. Special snowdrop openings have long been a tradition at Kingston Lacy so visitors can wander through the displays and salute this first welcome sign of spring. Keep an eye out for the estate’s fine herd of Red Ruby Devon cattle and explore the Japanese Garden which is sure to look even better with a dusting of frost.

Price: Free event (normal admission charges apply)

For more information please call 01202 883402

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/kingston-lacy

Make a weekend of it: With pink walls and a thatched roof, 524 Pamphill Green Cottage is a delightful semi-detached cottage tucked away in a quiet part of the Kingston Lacy estate.

Newark Park, Gloucestershire                   

Snowdrops Season, 13 – 15, 17 – 22, 24 – 29 February, 11am – 4pm

At Newark Park there are snowdrop drifts throughout the garden and they mingle with aconites and cyclamen to give an impressive show. Grab your walking boots and a camera and head to Newark where the carpets of snowdrops provide dazzling photo opportunities. Afterwards, warm up with a hot drink and well-deserved slice of cake in front of the fire in the Tudor sitting room.

Price: Free event (normal admission charges apply)

For more information, please call 01453 842644

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/newark-park

 Kingston Lacey

Saltram, Devon

A walk amongst the snowdrops, 4 – 31 January, 10am – 4pm

Standing high above the River Plym with magnificent views across the estuary, Saltram’s 500 acres of rolling parkland and woodland provide the perfect setting for a stunning snowdrop display. As the snowdrops frame the pathways take a stroll and explore the tranquil garden, 18th-century orangery and magnificent lime avenue. Return in February to plant a snowdrop with the garden team.

Price: Free event (normal admission charges apply)

For more information please call 01752 333500

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/saltram

London and South East

Mottisfont, Hampshire

Open daily, 10am – 5pm

Snowdrops thrive along the banks of the Font stream, where the warming effects of the water creates its own microclimate, teasing them into bloom a week or two before their companions in colder corners of the garden. Elsewhere, the open acres of the river garden are magically transformed by drifts of purest white.

Price: Garden admission charges apply

For more information please call 01794 340757

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/mottisfont

 

Nymans, West Sussex

Open daily, 10am – 4pm

This 20th-century garden is famed for its amazing collection of rare and important plants. At the start of spring, spot wonderful displays of snowdrops followed by camellias and magnolias underplanted with a host of daffodils and grape hyacinths. The bulb meadow in the walled garden is full of snowdrops and early narcissus and there are rare hellebores all around the garden. By Valentine’s Day, over 150 different types of plant are flowering at Nymans and the snowdrop drifts offer cool contrasts to fiery witch hazel oranges and the rich red stems of dogwoods.

Price: Garden admission charges apply

For more information please call 01444 405250.

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/nymans

Make a weekend of it: For people who love being close to nature, a stay at Woodlands Cottage is a great way to discover Nymans. The perfect retreat, the pretty cottage is surrounded by beautiful lakes and woodland walks.

Stowe, Buckinghamshire

Open daily, 10am – 4pm (from 13 February onwards 10am – 6pm)

Snowdrops are so cherished at Stowe that they even have their own season. The beginning of the year is ‘Stowedrop’ time as the delicate peeping blooms develop into white drifts in the Elysian Fields, Sleeping Wood and Lamport Garden. Take a walk amongst the snowdrops in this magical landscape of myths, lakes and temples.

Price: Garden admission charges apply

For information please call 01280 817156

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/stowe

East of England

 

Anglesey Abbey, Gardens & Lode Mill, Cambridgeshire

Snowdrop Season: 25 January – 28 February

Anglesey’s garden has over 300 different varieties of snowdrop scattered across 114 acres. Meander through the paths and soak up the fabulous show that the garden offers during this time. But snowdrops won’t be all that you see: the Winter Garden packed with vibrant colours, textures and the heady scent of winter flowering shrubs can brighten-up the darkest of winter days.

Price: Garden admission charges apply

For more information please call 01223810080

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/anglesey-abbey

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Ickworth, Suffolk

Open daily, 9am – 5.30pm

Throughout Ickworth Park, along the oak walk and the trim trail, snowdrops are complemented by the golden glow of aconites. Geraldine’s and Erskine’s walks are woken from their winter sleep by Galanthus ‘S Arnott, a relatively large snowdrop with a strong honey scent providing a feast for the senses. Discover amazing views of the estate or warm up in the West Wing restaurant with delicious food and drink (Friday to Tuesday).

Price: Free event (garden admission charges apply)

For more information please call 01284 735270.

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/ickworth

Make a weekend of it: Stay at the heart of the estate in one of Ickworth’s four cottages: there’s the quirky round house set in an enchanting woodland glade, two redbrick Victorian cottages in the parkland and the former head gardener’s cottage with its own walled garden.

 

Oxburgh Hall, Norfolk

Snowdrop Walks, 30 January – 16 March, 11.30am and 2pm

Feast your eyes on the stunning sights of Oxburgh, a huge moated Hall surrounded by 70 acres of gardens and woodlands. Join the team for a guided walk, or wander independently around the woodlands and take in the stunning carpets of snowdrops, aconites and other spring flowers.

Price: Garden admission charges apply

For more information please call 01366 328258

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/oxburgh-hall

 

Midlands

 

Attingham Park, Shropshire

Open daily, 8am – 5pm

Watch the woodland floor transform into a stunning carpet of snowdrops during Attingham’s snowdrop season. Take a stroll around this grand estate and discover over 200 years of history, acres of parkland and a beautiful walled garden. Keep an eye out for deer as you go.

Price: Normal admission charges apply

For more information please call 01743 708123

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/attingham-park

Belton House, Lincolnshire

Open daily, 9.30am – 4pm

With delightful gardens and lakeside walks, Belton is a pleasure to explore all year round and never more so as the early signs of spring creep in. Don’t miss the delicate displays of snowdrops that melt away all your thoughts of winter.

Price: Normal admission charges apply

For more information please call 01476 566116

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/belton-house

 

Baddesley Clinton, Warwickshire

Open daily, 9am – 4pm (from 13 February onwards 9am – 5pm)

Baddesley Clinton’s intimate gardens feel like a personal winter wonderland during the colder months. In January and February the snowdrops will be out in full bloom, both in the gardens and around the church. Enjoy a gentle stroll around the gardens and lake, and discover some of the estate’s late medieval and Tudor history along the way.

Price: Normal admission charges apply

For more information please call 01564 783294

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/baddesley-clinton

 

North West

 Dunham Massey

Dunham Massey, Cheshire

Open daily, 11am – 4pm
Throughout January and February, thousands of snowdrops will bloom in Britain’s largest winter garden at Dunham Massey. The garden contains almost 700 different plant species and a further 1,600 shrubs specifically bred for the seven-acre wonder. January heralds the first signs of spring, where clusters of over 100,000 double and single snowdrops and 20,000 narcissi begin to bloom amongst the trees.

Garden admission charges apply.

For more information, please call 0161 941 1025

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/dunham-massey

Yorkshire and North East

 

Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal, Yorkshire

Open 10am – 5pm
Set in 323 hectares of beautiful countryside, this World Heritage Site offers an unparalleled opportunity to appreciate Britain’s heritage and natural beauty. Early spring is the perfect time to explore the picturesque Abbey ruins and amble through the beautiful Georgian water garden, surrounded by white carpets of snowdrops. This is a stunning sight that dates back to the 19th-century, when Earl de Grey planted snowdrops to spell out his name along the backs of the river Skell.
Normal admission charges apply.

For more information please call 01765 608888

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/fountains-abbey

Make a weekend of it: Turn a visit to this magnificent site into a long weekend in a unique cottage. With eleven holiday cottages on offer, including apartments in the luxurious Fountains Hall and five cottages converted from a group of 18th-century farm buildings, there’s something for everyone.

Wallington, Northumberland

Open daily 10am – 6pm

As well as the common variety, Wallington’s snowdrop display includes a few specials. The less common varieties include the Northumbrian G. ‘Sandersii’ group which has sulphur yellow markings instead of green, and the pretty G. ‘Flore Pleno’ with double flowers. Don’t forget to visit the winter garden where purple Iris will brighten up any winter day.

Normal admission charges apply

For more information please call 01670 773600

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/wallington

 

Wales

 

Chirk Castle, Wrexham

Open 30 January onwards, 10am – 4pm
Chase away those winter blues with a bracing walk around the beautiful gardens and woodland at Chirk. Glimpses of snowdrops can be found throughout the garden, scattered between clipped yews, shrub and rock gardens, as well as drifting along the woodland floor.

Normal admission charges apply

For more information please call 01691 777701

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chirk-castle

 

 

Northern Ireland

 

The Argory, Co. Armagh

Snowdrop walks, 6 – 7, 13 – 14, 20 – 21, 27 – 28 February, 12pm – 5pm

This spectacular riverside estate has a stunning display of snowdrops and other beautiful spring bulbs throughout February. Snowdrop self-guided walks run every Saturday and Sunday in the month, where the scenic walk shows off the garden as the frost thaws, with a stunning backdrop of sweeping vistas. There are also delicate snowdrop plants available to buy in the shop and children can enjoy the adventure playground.

Price: Free event (normal admission charges apply)

For more information, please call 028 8778 4753

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/argory

 Snowdrop walk at The Argory Bernie Brown

Springhill, County Londonderry

Snowdrop walks, 6 – 7, 13 – 14, 20 – 21, 27 – 28 February, 12pm – 5pm

Explore the grounds of this beautiful 17th-century family home where blooms of snowdrops welcome in the springtime. Short walks around the estate are perfect for a leisurely stroll, and kids will be kept busy by the Natural Play Trail. Afterwards, enjoy some hot soup or a delicious tea and scone in the Servants’ Hall tea-room and take home your very own snowdrop plant, lovingly cultivated at Springhill.

Price: Free event (normal admission charges apply)

For more information please call 028 8674 8210

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/springhill

To plan a family day out with the National Trust visit: www.nationaltrust.org.uk

To book a holiday cottage visit: www.nationaltrustcottages.co.uk

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Property trends 2016

Last year’s housing market was shaped by optimism – house prices rose by 5.6 per cent nationally (10.6 in London), and above the 2007 peak for the first time, to reach new record levels (£186,350 nationally, and £503,431 in London), encouraging developers to build more homes and councils to approve record levels of new developments.

 

Helios Top View

But it was also one of despair for many, as record numbers of potential buyers and middle-class families gave up on their dream of owning a home. New research from the Bank of England revealed that half of families who don’t own a home never think that they will – that’s some 4.5million households. The rate of home ownership has fallen from 73 per cent in 2007 to 65 per cent today.

And next year? Recognising the crisis, the government used its Autumn Statement to announce a raft of new measures to try and increase the amount of new homes being built, and to help first-time buyers even more. But the pressure on supply is still likely to keep pushing up prices – at least until interest rates start to rise and push up mortgage costs, which is predicted to happen by the end of the year. So if you have a home, sort out your five-year fixed-rate deal now, and if you’re thinking of buying, get in before those rates rise.

New hot spots to watch out for

Agents are tipping Victoria as a new ‘prime’ location thanks to its proximity to landmarks like Buckingham Palace.

Likewise, The Lancasters in Bayswater redefined W2, doubling values achieved north of Hyde Park for the first time in 2015.

“At the moment, a similar sort of thing is happening in Marylebone with The Chilterns development – upcoming luxury schemes in Nine Elms and Liverpool Street look set to have the same effect in other parts of the capital,” says Charlie Willis, Head of London Residential at Strutt & Parker

Other areas of growth will be in Fitzrovia and Kings Cross ,which are rapidly changing out of all recognition, tips Andrew Ellinas, Director at Sandfords.

“In terms of potential hotspots for 2016, we predict that outer London areas will continue to rise more rapidly than prime markets as buyers continue to look for value and investors for better yields. Areas such as East London, Canary Wharf, Camden, Islington, and new markets like Croydon will all outperform prime. Additionally, overlooked parts of the capital, such as Tooting and Streatham in south London, are expected to become more popular,” suggests Camilla Dell, Managing Partner at property buying agency, Black Brick.

Last year Walthan Forest and Lewisham were London’s best performing boroughs for rising prices, because they were comparatively so affordable to start with – we expect first-time buyers to continue to look further out in zones three and four for better value, as well as areas on the edge of zone one that offer better value, such as Elephant and Castle, Vauxhall, and Pimlico.

The Crossrail effect will also start to kick in – places you’ve never heard of, like Shenfield and Abbey Wood, will suddenly be worth considering once the high-speed rail connection becomes a reality.

 

Developments to watch for 2016

 

The Stage – A new Shakespeare museum, his original theatre dug our from the mud, and new homes and the first designer shops in Shoreditch, this development will mark Shoreditch’s coming of age.

 Dusk View

Television Centre – Stanhope’s development of the iconic BBC Television Centre in White City will launch in April 2016, reviving a huge area of west London.

 

Chelsea Barracks – the first phase of this long-awaited £3billion super-prime development on Chelsea Bridge Road launches this year, with apartments and a café designed by Squire and Partners.

 

Old Oak Park – if you’ve ever been to Car Giant in London, you’ll know it’s vast. Now try to picture it without all of the cars… The canalside site will be transformed into hundreds of new homes, restaurants, shops and even a new tube station, with Crossrail nearby.

 

Chelsea Waterfont – this vast new development centred around a Victorian power station will link up the hinterland between the Kings Road and Chelsea Wharf and includes residential, retail, restaurants and new parks.

 

Greenwich Peninsula – There’s been plenty of hype about Nine Elms, but not much chatter about Greenwich Peninsula, which will offer almost as many homes (15,000), waterfront bars, restaurants and shops, and a mini Southbank for south-east London, all just one tube stop from Canary Wharf.

Chelsea Waterfront CGI

GOING UP

Mortgage rates – the Fed has put up the interest rate in the US for the first time since the crisis, will the Bank of England follow suit? We think so.

House prices – in 2015 average house prices in London broke through the £500,000 barrier for the first time. We can’t see demand fading, although prices are reaching unsustainable levels, which will reduce the amount of potential buyers, causing the rate of growth to slow – especially if interest rates rise.

The study – thanks to the internet more of us are working from home, so a dedicated work space is now a must, developers are only just waking up to the fact that everyone has a computer, printer and scanner, and we need a space for them.

First-time buyers – The government has introduced even more new measures to try and help new buyers into the ladder – a 20 per cent discount for first-timers buying below £450,000 in London; doubling the value of Help to Buy to a 40 per cent equity loan in the capital; increasing shared ownership, and a new Help to Buy ISA, plus and increase in the amount of 95 per cent mortgages will all help to get more new buyers into their own homes this year. 

Garden and outdoor rooms – Any outdoor space is a precious commodity and more of us are turning our gardens into “outdoor rooms” with elaborate kitchens and furniture, and installing posh sheds and studios to extend our homes outwards without the cost of moving or building an extension.

Rented, reinvented – The PRS – or private rental sector – is one of the fastest growing new-build areas as developers realize that young people who cannot buy will pay for quality, new-build, long-term rental properties. The developer not only gets the capital gain of the property, but a steady rental income, while tenants can expect a higher standard and quality of contract, including integrated broadband and Sky TV, longer tenancies, and concierges to manage buildings, maintenance and collect those ASOS packages while you’re out.

Broken plan – think nooks for teenagers to sit with their iPads in, while the rest of the family watch TV, and break-out spaces for toys or work.

Swimming pools – going up in every sense! Swimming at altitude looks set to become a new London trend with rooftop pools, panoramic 24th floor pools, and even a suspended swimming pool bridge all being built into new schemes.

 

GOING DOWN

The dining room – admit it, in real life you eat your supper on your lap watching Masterchef.

Open plan – so you really want to eat curry in the same room as you dry your washing or to try and focus on work at the table while your other half watches the footy?

Buy to let – new rules on stamp duty and tax relief from George Osborne have been designed to make it less appealing, which could be good news for first-time buyers, who are often beaten to affordable homes buy investors.

Grey – There’s a certain developer look to new build homes – gloss kitchens, grey walls, white bathrooms and metro tiles – that’s getting a bit tired. Buyer are bored of bland and searching for something more personal and localised, expect a rise of British interiors, craftsmanship, and homes and interiors inspired by their surroundings and the history of the site or area.

Technology – super whizzy, remote-controlled properties that are all bling and completely confusing are seeing a backlash from buyers, who’d rather install their own tech systems or enjoy a more simplified home. Too many switches and controls add up to high maintenance and ‘messy’ walls cluttered with control panels.

Luxury buyers – almost all agents agree that the top of the housing market could falter in 2016 as new changes to stamp duty will make people think twice about buying in the £2-5million bracket.

Screen Shot 2016-01-07 at 13.23.38

 

ALISON TYLER

 

 

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